Flooding closes roads, schools snarls traffic

4-5 inches of rain estimated to have fallen,Tropical Storm Nicole lashes area with wind, rain, Chester County declares state of emergency

By Mike McGann, Editor, UnionvilleTimes.com

Fairville Road in Chadds Ford flooded near the Brandywine, Friday. It was just one of a number of roads in the Unionville area closed because of flooding.—Mike McGann photo

Flooding snarled traffic, closed roads and schools — and even prompted a two-hour delay in the opening of Chester County offices Friday morning, as the remnants of Tropical Storm Nicole lashed the Unionville area Thursday night and Friday morning.

Schools in the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District were closed Friday — with officials announcing the closure Thursday night in anticipation of flooding. Those floods hit in the overnight and earlier morning hours, closing various roadways including Rt. 926 in Birmingham and U.S. 1 in Chadds Ford.

Because of widespread flooding, Chester County declared a state of emergency, Friday.

Chester County delayed opening of county offices by two hours and had emergency service workers mobilized around the county to cope with flooding and damage caused by high winds across the county.

“Tropical Storm Nicole has generated conditions which actually or potentially have a serious (impact) on the safety, health or welfare of the citizens of Chester County,” the county’s emergency services department said in a press release.

According to the National Weather Service, 4 to 5 inches on rain fell on the Unionville area as the remnants of Nicole moved through the area — although the Brandywine had been low, only a week earlier drought warnings were issued, the large amount of rain in such a short period of time inundated the area. Although PECO was reporting more than 3,500 homes across Chester County as being without power because of the storm, few were thought to be in the Unionville area.
The good news: by midday, the waters were beginning to recede and roadways were expected to be largely open before the evening rush. Although rain and wind dampened the opening hours of the Unionville Fair, sunshine was expected by mid-afternoon and with schools closed, more kids are expected to be able to attend the fair on its opening day. Plans for the Unionville High School homecoming remain in place for Saturday, with forecasts for warm and sunny weather throughout the rest of the weekend.

Updated at 2:03 p.m.

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